The Data Reveals that 8 Men are as Rich as Half the World

The Data Reveals that 8 Men are as Rich as Half the World

The Data Reveals that 8 Men are as Rich as Half the World

$CS, $MSFT, $AMZN, $FB, $ORCL

The gap between the super-rich and the poorest half of the global population is starker than previously thought, with just eight men, from Bill Gates to Michael Bloomberg, owning as much wealth as 3.6-B people, according to an analysis by Oxfam released Monday.

Presenting its findings on the dawn of the annual gathering of the global political and business elites at Davos, CH.

The anti-poverty organization Oxfam says the gap between the very rich and poor is far greater than just a year ago. It’s urging leaders to do more than pay lip-service to the problem.

If not, it warns, public anger against this kind of inequality will continue to grow and lead to more seismic political changes akin to last year’s election of Donald Trump as US President and Britain’s vote to leave the EU.

“It is obscene for so much wealth to be held in the hands of so few when 1 in 10 people survive on less than $2 a day,” said the Executive Director of Oxfam International, who will be attending the meeting in Davos. “Inequality is trapping hundreds of millions in poverty; it is fracturing our societies and undermining democracy.”

The same report a year earlier had found that the richest 62 people on the planet owned as much wealth as the bottom 50% of the population. However, Oxfam has revised that figure down to % following new information gathered by Swiss bank Credit Suisse (NYSE:CS).

Oxfam used Forbes’ billionaires list that was last published in March 2016 to make its headline claim.

According to the Forbes list, Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) founder Gates is the richest individual with a net worth of $75-B. The others, in order of ranking, are Amancio Ortega, the Spanish founder of fashion house Inditex, financier Warren Buffett, Mexican business magnate Carlos Slim Helu, Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) boss Jeff Bezos, Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) creator Mark Zuckerberg, Oracle’s (NASDAQ:ORCL) Larry Ellison and Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York.

Oxfam outlined measures that it hopes will be enacted to help reduce the inequality.

They include higher taxes on wealth and income to ensure a more level playing field and to fund investments in public services and jobs, greater cooperation among governments on ensuring workers are paid decently and the rich don’t dodge their taxes. And business leaders should commit to paying their fair share of taxes and a living wage to employees.

Oxfam’s policy adviser, urged billionaires to “do the right thing,” and to do “what Bill Gates has called on them to do, which is pay their taxes.”

The ability of the rich to avoid paying their fair share of taxes was vividly exposed last year in the so-called “Panama Papers,” a leaked trove of data that revealed details on offshore accounts that helped individuals shelter their wealth.

It’s because of this kind of inequality that trust in institutions has fallen sharply since the global financial crisis of Y 2008, according to Edelman, one of the world’s biggest marketing firms.

In its own pre-Davos survey of more than 33,000 people across 28 markets, Edelman found the largest-ever drop in trust across government, business, media and even non-governmental organizations. CEO credibility is at an all-time low and government leaders are the least trusted group, according to the survey.

The firm’s Y 2017 Trust Barometer found that 53% of respondents believe the current system has failed them in that it is unfair and offers few hopes for the future, with only 15% believing it is working. That belief was evident for both the general population and those with college education.

“The implications of the global trust crisis are deep and wide-ranging,” said Richard Edelman, the firm’s President/CEO. “It began with the Great Recession of 2008, but like the 2nd and #rd waves of a tsunami, globalization and technological change have further weakened people’s trust in global institutions. The consequence is virulent populism and nationalism as the mass population has taken control away from the elites.”

Edelman highlighted how “the emergence of a media echo chamber” that reinforces personal beliefs while shutting out opposing views has magnified this “cycle of distrust.” According to the survey, search engines are trusted more as an information tool than traditional news editors, 59 to 41%.

“People now view media as part of the elite,” said Edelman. “The result is a proclivity for self-referential media and reliance on peers. The lack of trust in media has also given rise to the fake news phenomenon and politicians speaking directly to the masses.”

Edelman said business may be best-placed to help improve trust. Companies need to be transparent and honest with their employees about the changes taking place in the work-place, improve skills and pay fairly, he said.

The online survey was conducted between 13 October and 16 November 2016.

Stay tuned…

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Paul Ebeling

Paul A. Ebeling, polymath, excels in diverse fields of knowledge. Pattern Recognition Analyst in Equities, Commodities and Foreign Exchange and author of “The Red Roadmaster’s Technical Report” on the US Major Market Indices™, a highly regarded, weekly financial market letter, he is also a philosopher, issuing insights on a wide range of subjects to a following of over 250,000 cohorts. An international audience of opinion makers, business leaders, and global organizations recognizes Ebeling as an expert.

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